Overdue, overlength trip report - Day 4

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Escrito por Ket desde (?) el día viernes, 12 de mayo, 2006 a las 00:15:29 horas :

The Fourth Day Monday 24 April 2006

The Screaming Bird slept in today and so did we. We actually didn’t get out of bed until around 9:00. At home I rarely sleep past 7, even on weekends, so I took this as proof of how one can relax when in paradise.

Via telephone, we arranged to meet our friends at poolside and agreed to walk down the beach to the South (or would that be East) for breakfast. I finished my shower, and was waiting on the sweet one to finish hers when I decided to go down to the restaurant for a cup of mud. As I rounded the corner by the pool and turned towards the beach I was smacked in the face by smell of the sea, and it wasn’t near as pleasant as the day before. Apparently, the pungent algae had picked this day to once again bloom in the bay, turn the water brownish yellow, kick up a stink, and perhaps most importantly, it had brought another massive cruise ship in with it. I took a moment to stop and admire the behemoth for a few minutes as I wound my way over to Dona Prudencias. The ship was a beauty, she sort of reminded me of a giant duck, and all her little boats scurrying around her to take the happy cruisers to and fro reminded me of her fat little ducklings. I must say I was once again struck by the sheer magnitude of these things, and how it looked so out of place in the gorgeous bay. When I was a kid, my Dad brought a horse into the living room of our house…

Don’t get me wrong…I’m not knocking the cruise ships or those who choose to travel that way. Myself, I love all things mechanical, and these have to be right up there with some of man-kinds greatest mechanical achievements. I really would like to tour one someday to check out the engine room, helm, navigation systems, etc, but as far as traveling on one…well, I think I’m more into the destination than the journey. Sure it’s kind of a bummer for those of us staying in Zihuatanejo to have our view of the bay disrupted for a while, and the mysterious algae bloom suddenly appearing, but who am I to say anyone should be denied the beauty of Zihua, just because they chose to take a different method of getting here. Besides, I’m sure the citizens and merchants of Z probably appreciate the added business it brings to their community; otherwise I am sure they would have shut them down long ago. I was just thinking maybe they could park a little farther out towards the sea in some deeper water. Those that still wanted to enjoy the magnificent views of the bays interior and could do so from the windows of those fat little boats the mother ship pukes out to take the pax into town. I have not gotten a phone call or letter from the Mayor of Zihuatanejo, nor the presidents of any cruise lines as of this morning, asking my input on this situation, though when the call or letter comes, I will be happy to advise; until then…

We cruised on down the beach to try the breakfast at LaPerla. It was exceptionally hot this day, and I’d worked up a pretty good sweat by the time we were seated. Breakfast of fruit plates, French Toast, bacon, and omelets was quite tasty, and the service was great also.

After Breakfast, we headed back to the Villa Mexicana to just “hang-out” on the beach for the day. About 2:00, I began to feel a little thirsty, so I ordered a pail of Coronas from a passing waiter from Dona Pudencia. I was still a little stunned by the price of the beers from the first night, but figured “What the heck, they cost this much back home, and I’d have to shovel snow off the drive-way and endure some fierce wind to go get them.” Besides, I couldn’t motivate myself to leave the shade of the palapa. Darrell went back to his room after I ordered the coolies and returned with his nifty new miniature speaker system for his i-pod. When the waiter returned, we were listening to the easy sounds of Buffett, Townes Van Zandt, Jack Johson, The Eagles, and some other laid back faves. I got up once and walked over to the nearest occupied palapa to make sure our music was not being intrusive or annoying. There was a lady with extremely short hair relaxing and reading a book beneath the palapa. I could not hear our music from there, but as I was executing the test she suddenly turned a gave me sharp glare. I explained that I was only making sure our music would not be bothering anyone else, but she just held the glare until I shrugged and started off. I am not sure if it was because she saw our music device earlier, the fact that I was chugging a beer behind her, or what, but I decided the test was over and left the area for my own palapa and friendlier environs. I glanced back toward the pool area and there were the cats. Two were shaking their heads at me, and one was blatantly laughing, so I secretly flipped them the bird, which must mean the same thing in Spanish, because they took off, probably to find the manager. After the first couple of Coronas it was very easy to rationalize ordering another pail, this time with some cheese quesadillas and chips, salsa, and guacamole. Besides, they had an imprint of my card at the front desk and I could just charge it to the room. Simple.

The food was deeelish, and each beer was better than the one before. Several vendors stopped by to say hello, and we lightened the load for them somewhat and had a great time practicing our Spanish with them. There was one in particular who was selling some sort of lotions and potions that she said she made herself in her own home. She stuck around quite a while because at first she thought our Spanish was quite entertaining, and of course, the more Coronas I consumed the more articulate I became. I’m telling you this lotion was amazing, I think it was formulated as a treatment for dry skin, but it even made Darrells recently shaved head sprout a collection of thicker, more fuller hair after she applied it herself to his cranium, much to the delight of us and those around us.

I had a pair of binochulars and was studying the cruise ship in the bay, and all the activity going on around her when I noticed something quite engaging. The anchor was coming up! I handed the binochs to Darrell and told him to have a look as I found it to be quite the spectacle with all the water cascading down the chain and out of the anchor hold. Darrell took a look and informed me that I had too many brewskies, the chain was not moving. Catalina then took a look, and agreed with me that indeed the anchor was coming up. A lively argument ensued until SHOOOSH…The anchor slowly revealed itself. I gave a cheer, raised my bottle of Corona, and exclaimed “Now here is a schedule I can get used to, when watching and toasting a cruise ship as she weighs anchor is the busiest thing I’ve done all day.” Even the short haired nice lady a few palapas over appeared to be chuckling at that remark. The cats were not chuckling, they were rolling their eyes.

Supper that night was at the LaGula. What a superb place. This was our second time here, and everything was just as we remembered it, or it was how I think I remembered it as I was little basted the last time we were there also. We were seated and immediately provided with some little frozen towels which smelled like wildflowers. These felt great since it was quite warm this evening. We orderd a some drinks and started to look around as we were seated next to the rail over-looking the Calle and buildings below and across. We were contemplating and discussing construction techniques and exposed re-bar on a building that appeared to be either under construction or abandoned several years ago, when the sweet one stopped talking in mid-sentence and then said she saw something move beneath a pile of boards and old tin on the second floor. For once it was my turn to accuse her of too many Coronas, but then Darrell saw it too. He said he saw a foot move in there. After staring intensely for several minutes, we all saw the foot move. It was not something, it was some ONE. When the waiter returned with another round, I attempted to ask him in Spanglish if some one lived in the rubble across the street. He appeared confused and told me to wait una momenta. The proprietress returned in short order and asked if there was a problem, as her husband did not speak English as well as she did and they were afraid we were dissatisfied or something. I pointed across the street, and started to ask about the person, but didn’t get it out just right and she launched into a story of who owned the building and how they were remodeling, etc. I again pointed and asked if there was a person living under the pile. She stared and then I think the person must have moved because she gave a little gasp, and said simply “Oh, yes maybe there is…very unusual and difficult.” We were all a little taken aback and saddened by this scene as were once again reminded how many different worlds there are on this one planet. We enjoyed some more conversation and she said that she remembered Dormies face from our visit two years earlier. I was secretly glad she remembered Dormies face and not something I had said or done the first time we were there. The food was outstanding, I had shrimp in a creamy cheese sauce, Darrell a fish fillett, Dormie a steak, and Catalina I think had a type of shrimp scampi. The main courses were followed by delectable deserts of frozen custards and fried bananas. I am certainly no food snob, and rarely notice these things but the presentation was simply awe inspiring. The food was beyond compare, prepared by an open-air chef before our very eyes, and the environment was simply magic. All this for only about 400 pesos per couple. We left a nice tip, tipped the chef and headed towards the door. I am glad I asked Catalina how to say bananas in Espaniol, just to be sure, because when the proprietress asked how we liked the meal on the way out, I would have told her that I loved her fried pants. The La Gula is truly a great place, the people there are the absolute best, and the place remains one of our favorites.

We took a cab back home and hit the rack, as tomorrow we were fishing with Amado, and I knew sleep would be elusive, as I was looking forward to another life changing experience.

Next up…Stood up at the pier?!

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